We are searching data for your request:
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.
You have two main options: Rely on the crib that your hotel provides (if it provides one at all) or bring your own portable bed and bedding with you.
Hotel cribs are obviously the most convenient, but there's a big caveat: You have to check them out carefully before using them. Many are old (some predating safety regulations) and structurally unsafe, and others come with bedding — such as folded full-sized sheets — that could present a hazard to your sleeping child. A few years ago, the federal Consumer Product Safety Commission ran a spot check on cribs at some 90 hotels and motels across the country; more than four out of five were found to violate federal safety guidelines. Since then, some hotel chains have agreed to upgrade their cribs, but the watchword remains: Parents beware.
Here are some things to watch for when inspecting a hotel crib:
To avoid crib collapses, check the hardware to make sure none of the screws or bolts are missing, loose, or bent, and that your small child can't release the safety latches.
To avoid head and limb injuries, the side slats should be no more than 2 3/8 inches apart (about the width of a dollar bill). Also, make sure none of the slats are loose, cracked, or missing. (If the sides are mesh, the mesh should not be torn or have holes.) Headboards and footboards should be solid, without cutouts, and the crib should be free of sharp or jagged edges.
To prevent suffocation and strangulation, the mattress should fit snugly into the crib and be on a support that's securely attached to the headboard and footboard. It's also crucial that it have a fitted sheet especially designed for cribs, not adult-sized sheets. Avoid other dangerous bedding such as pillows, heavy comforters and blankets, and bedding that's too soft.
Call in advance to ask what kind of crib your baby can expect. Then check to make sure it meets current safety standards set by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. If you're not sure the crib will be safe, or if you don't know where you'll be staying each night on your trip, it's best to bring your own portacrib or play yard, as long as it meets safety standards. (The modern play yard is a combination of an old-fashioned play pen and a portable crib. It's safe for sleeping, often has a removable bassinet for the youngest babies, and folds compactly to fit in the trunk of your car.) Even if you plan to use the hotel crib, it's wise to bring your own crib sheet and lightweight crib blanket, since many hotels don't supply them. They're also a comforting reminder of home for your baby.
A final option is to bring your baby into bed with you. While many experts regard this as unsafe because adult-sized pillows and sheets present suffocation hazards, it's probably a better choice than placing your baby in a crib that might collapse. If your baby is too young to push up or roll over, you may want to purchase a portable folding bed with its own fitted sheet or mattress pad. These beds, which are easy to assemble, nestle between the pillows at the head of your bed and keep your infant safe.